Thinking of taking a road trip this summer? Perhaps heading to the beach or even just to visit family?

Cape Town - Thinking of taking a road trip this summer? Perhaps heading to the beach or even just to visit family?

Before hitting the road, take a few minutes to evaluate the condition of your vehicle (engine included) and tyres.

Regular car maintenance should be carried throughout the year. However, a vehicle requires additional care in the hot summer months as you are more likely to drive for long distances.


BP provides some care maintenance tips below:


Create a regular cleaning schedule for your radiator

This will boost the engine’s cooling effect and lessen the chance of your engine overheating.


Change your oil and oil filter

You should change your oil regularly, as stated in your driver’s manual. You should get oil changes more often if you make extended trips with lots of luggage, or if you are towing a boat or trailer. The truth is, most of us do a lot of travelling during the summer months when an engine is more likely to overheat.


Check your tyre pressure regularly

You should do it at least once a month, and always before going on a road trip. Under-inflating is a tire’s number one nemesis, because it can cause harm that may lead to tyre failure.


Rotate your tyres every 10 000km

If your tyres show uneven wear, ask your service professional to look for and adjust any misalignment, imbalance or other mechanical obstacles involved before rotation.


Check your fluids

It is important to keep all the vehicles fluids at the recommended levels before a road trip, this can help you avoid overheating. This includes motor oil, coolant, transmission, differential, power-steering and windscreens washer fluids. If you’re unsure about which fluids to use or how much to add, ask your mechanic for help.


Change your wipers

Yes, it's summer, but it's probably going to rain at some point. Worn wipers create nasty streaks across the windshield and can affect your vision while driving. Replacing them doesn't cost much, but it can be a fiddly operation. If you're in the habit of taking your car in for oil changes, ask them about the wipers, too. Sometimes a dealership will sell you the wipers and install them for free.


Keep to one service mechanic, if possible

Much like you have a regular GP, because he knows your medical history and understands your unique requirements, the same applies to the servicing of your vehicle. Credible workshops will keep a detailed history (service log) of your vehicle and will be able to reference it if they are unsure about what has been replaced, may need replacing, or any custom specifications that need to be taken into account.

Adapted from a press release for IOL